The USPS is Vital for Voters During a Pandemic

American Muslims are more likely to vote during this pandemic with universal mail-in voting.

August 19, 2020

What You Need To Know

President Donald Trump has waged war against the United States Postal Service in order to slow down universal mail-in ballots, alleging that universal mail-in ballots favor Democrats and increase voter fraud. The Brookings Institute conducted studies to prove that neither of the president’s allegations are supported by any factual finding, and are simply put, incorrect.
President Trump's opposition to universal mail-in voting contradicts his support of absentee voting, although there is little difference between the two other than the latter requiring voters to request a ballot to be mailed out to their home, and in some states with a valid excuse. We fully support universal mail-in voting during the COVID-19 pandemic, and will not support any form of voter suppression, including President Trump’s obstruction of the USPS ability to successfully deliver the casted ballots of Americans before election day.

The Details

Over the past week, post offices across the nation have been closed, like in the heavily American Muslim concentrated Hamtramack, MI. USPS postal boxes across the nation have been sealed up. USPS staff have been denied overtime hours, resulting in delays of mail delivery in cities across the nation. Furthermore, ten percent of mail-sorting machines have been decommissioned, increasing the time it takes for a parcel to be delivered to its destination.

As election day approaches and the number of deaths in America due to COVID-19 continue to increase, many American voters will not be comfortable heading to the polls to cast their ballots this upcoming November. Many states, including perennial swing states like Michigan, have introduced universal mail-in voting as a solution for voting during this pandemic. Although it is unknown how strong voter turnout will be this November, one could see that more Republican voters will head to the polls in person due to the rhetoric waged by the president against the pandemic, masks, and the increasing misinformation about the seriousness of the COVID-19 virus being spread by the Trump administration.

Furthermore, the pandemic has disproportionately taken the lives of American minorities. As an example, Hispanics are more than three times more likely to lose their life from the COVID-19 virus than those who identify as White. The very real impact of the pandemic will discourage such communities from heading to the polls in person this November, and rightfully so. The President of the United States must make choices that do not only benefit him, but the greater welfare of the American people. Jeopardizing the life of any American unnecessarily must be avoided at all costs, yet time and time again when we look to our leader to make the right choice— he does anything but.

To continue, increasing the hurdles for mail-in voting this November should be considered a form of voter suppression against minorities, including American Muslims, since minorities are disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 virus and will likely not feel safe heading to the polls in person. President Trump does not have the authority to deny states the right to allow universal mail-in voting since that authority is given to each individual state, so he has decided to cripple the process by waging war on the USPS, a federal agency. This halt is an abuse of executive authority and sets the precedent for dismantling our democratic system— one which allows our vote to be our voice. Despite the decision of states to maintain Mail-in Ballot voting, election officials do not allow ballots to be counted if they are not received by Election Day. Thousands of valid ballots may be thrown out due to the President’s negligence and willful dismantling of the USPS.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and congressional members of the House oversight committee requested that Postmaster General Louis Dejoy, a major Trump campaign donor, testify regarding his management of the USPS. We fully support an investigation into the recent mismanagement of the USPS, just as we ardently oppose any form of voter suppression in our elections. In order for a democracy to function properly, the citizens should be granted the opportunity to vote, and to do so safely.

In order to ensure a safe electoral process, our GOTV team at MPAC has taken the initiative to prepare our community for this year’s election. Due to our experience organizing through the #MillionMuslimVote campaign, we recommend preparing for this election weeks ahead of time, not just days. In order for your vote to count, it is vital that you follow your state’s regulations. If it is safe to do so, you can drop off your ballot at your locality’s clerk. In order to help with this preparation, our GOTV team is preparing voter checklists customized with the deadlines for mail-in voting for each state. In the lead up to this election, we will be hosting many virtual programs, including informative webinars and candidate forums, which you can attend from the safety of your home. Lastly, we will be urging others in our community to vote through our phone-banking drives.

Our vote is our right as well as our collective voice. This right was granted to us by the founders of this nation. When we head to the polls, we are exercising our right as American citizens to check and balance our government at all levels. We cannot allow the current administration to mute our voices this upcoming November.



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